ibis reproductive healthibis reproductive health
 

Abortion

Reproductive health access for women in the US military
More than 350,000 women are in the US military’s active duty and reserve forces, and 97% are of reproductive age. Women in the military face unique challenges when it comes to accessing contraception and abortion services, especially women deployed overseas where these services may be limited, and where policies prohibiting or discouraging sexual activity may prevent women from seeking the care to which they are entitled. In the case of abortion, servicewomen have very few options through the military health insurance program, TRICARE. Women may obtain abortions in military facilities only in cases where the pregnancy threatens the woman’s life or is a result of rape or incest. Further, TRICARE covers abortion only when the woman’s life is at risk. Women overseas may have virtually no access to safe abortion care; even if they are willing to pay for the service, abortion is legally restricted in many countries where US troops are deployed.

Since 2010, Ibis Reproductive Health has performed quantitative and qualitative research on servicewomen’s needs and experiences related to abortion and other sexual and reproductive health issues. The following list summarizes our current and completed research studies on this topic:

These data fill critical knowledge gaps related to servicewomen’s reproductive health experiences and provide new insights into the challenges that some women face, particularly overseas. These studies also illustrate a number of concrete ways in which access can be improved to better meet women’s needs. To learn more about these projects, please see the publications and briefs listed below.

Briefs

Publications

Commentary

Resources

If you are interested in learning more about our military work, please contact Kate Grindlay.

 

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